Blizzard Disaster Preparation Tips
Before a Blizzard
As beautiful as new fallen snow can be it can also be disruptive, destructive, and deadly. Heavy snow on roadways can make for dangerous driving. Snow on power lines can also cause power outages that can last for days. Being prepared for heavy snowfall and having extra emergency supplies on hand is the best way to make sure your family stays safe both during and after the storm.
What to do if a blizzard is in the forecast
1. Know before you go. Check the Oregon TripCheck Website to view highway road cameras to see the road conditions in your area.
2. Prepare an emergency kit and make a family communications plan.
3. Become aware of evacuation routes in your area. Be sure to have access to a radio or CB radio so you can stay up to date on local weather and evacuation orders issued by authorities should they arise. Don’t count on power! Be prepared.
4. If you are in an area where a rock or mudslide could occur near the place you are taking as safe harbor. Put out sandbags or hay bails in advance. Mudflows or rock slides can happen very suddenly in the event of heavy rainfall or snow run off after a blizzard. You don’t want to be stuck in your safe harbor location in the aftermath of the storm.
5. Avoid low-lying areas such as valleys and rivers. After a blizzard, the snow will eventually melt away and recede. This can cause flooding. If you live in an area that is low or prone to flooding be prepared before the blizzard, so you are not stuck in the afterwards.
How to Prepare for a Blizzard
Thomas Kostigen, renowned National Geographic and New York Times bestselling author, is here to help you and your family prepare for a potential ice or snow emergency.
Visit https://www.liveprepared.com/ to learn more about emergency preparedness. Learn how to prepare for a blizzard or ice storm and what to do if you get caught in one.
Prepare an Emergency Kit
- Water, one gallon of water per person per day for three days (both drinking and sanitation)
- Food, three-day supply, non-perishable. Have high energy food, such as dried fruit, nuts and granola bars, and food that does not require cooking.
- Battery or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries
- Flashlights and extra batteries
- First aid kit
- Heating fuel. Refuel before you are empty. Fuel carriers may not reach you for days after a winter storm.
- Moist towelettes, garbage bags, plastic ties (personal sanitation)
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- Manual can opener for food
- Local paper maps
- Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger
- Make sure pets have plenty of food, water and shelter
Visit Ready.gov for more information on preparing, maintaining and storing your emergency kit.
Develop a Family Communication Plan
- Your family may not be together, plan how you will contact one another.
- Create a contact card for all family members and keep them in a wallet, purse, backpack, briefcase, etc.
- Check emergency plans with your children’s day care or school.
- Identify a non-local friend or relative household members can notify when they are safe, they may be in a better position to communicate between separated families.
- If you have a cell phone, program that person(s) as “ICE” (In Case of Emergency) in your phone. If you are in an accident, emergency personnel will often check your ICE listings in order to get a hold of someone you know.
- Text messages can often get around network disruptions when a phone call might not be able to get through.
We care about your safety! Please let us know if we can do anything, we are here for you. Please take care, heed the warnings and stay safe!